Everything got just a little more complicated in quarantine — and that applies to breakups, too, since it’s not exactly feasible to end things in person due to social distancing guidelines. The next best thing? A video chat breakup — aka “zumping.” So, what is zumping? This new trend refers to dumping someone over the most popular video conference app. Fortunately for you, I’m going to lay out exactly how to have a Zoom breakup while still showing compassion, respect, and dignity.
A video chat breakup doesn’t exactly sound ideal, does it? There’s always a chance that you have technical difficulties, like poor WiFi connectivity, which could make the convo even more awkward. Here’s the thing, though: it’s a far better mode of communication for breakups than text, or even a phone call. That’s because visual cues in your facial expressions and body language can offer a lot of insight into how you’re both feeling, which is so key when you’re having a tough, vulnerable discussion like this one.
Whether you’ve decided it isn’t working with your virtual date of two months or a long- distance partner of two years, here are all the ins and outs of zumping you should know before you pull the plug.
Zumping: Is It Right For Me?
The way I see it is this: The only way to figure out what mode of communication makes sense for your breakup is to think about the strength of your connection and the stage of your relationship.
If you only went on a couple of FaceTime dates with someone, you probably don’t need to have a Zoom conference to end things (unless you really want to). That said, don’t ghost your date, either. A kind but straightforward text or a quick phone call should suffice.
However, if you’ve gone on a handful of dates with someone and things were starting to feel a tad more serious, then a Zoom breakup is definitely appropriate. The format of video will allow you to convey your feelings better, and it shows respect for the person that you were building a connection with that you took the time to talk with them face to
If you’re in a long-term relationship with someone, there are cases in which a Zoom breakup may be necessary, unfortunately. For example, if you’re feeling emotionally drained by the relationship, or it’s otherwise negatively impacting your well-being, it’s likely time to cut your losses and move on. That’s not to say you should “zump” a long- term partner at the first sign of trouble — I always advise against making hasty decisions during a stressful time, and this pandemic is certainly one of those crises. But if you’re certain you can’t work things out and you need some space, it’s perfectly appropriate to break up over Zoom since you can’t meet up in real life (IRL) without compromising your health and safety.
How Do I Plan a Zoom Breakup?
Having a plan for your Zoom breakup will help to minimize any anxiety around the conversation.
So, when should you break the news? As a courtesy to your partner, consider doing it at a time when you know they’ll be free to relax, process their feelings, and maybe even call a friend for some emotional support. In other words, don’t do it right before they’re about to start their workday or go to bed.
Before you hop on your Zoom call, you may want to jot down a few notes of things you need to remember. Having a loose script to follow may help you to stay on track even when you feel uncomfortable or nervous. Just don’t read off a script when you’re actually breaking up with them — or you could come off downright cold and robotic. Rather, have your reminders nearby, and if you need to, you can steal a quick glance.
FYI, if you send your date a text that says “we need to talk” before scheduling a Zoom call, they’ll probably suspect they’re about to get zumped. There’s no need to cause them any stress or anxiety leading up to the call, but you do want to schedule your Zoom call ahead of time rather than just asking them to join an impromptu conference at the last minute.
Which brings me to another point: For the love of God, please be sure to turn off notifications on your laptop and phone during your Zoom breakup. The last thing you want is to have alerts going off — it’ll be distracting for you both, and whatever your connection to this person was, you both deserve to be fully present for the conversation.
What Should I Say?
The hardest part about executing a breakup is working up the courage to actually break the news. Once you’re on your Zoom call, you’ll likely start off with a little small talk — and that’s totally fine. There’s no need to blurt out the words, “I don’t want to see you anymore,” straight off the bat. However, you also don’t want to get so carried away with that small talk that it becomes increasingly awkward to suddenly end your relationship As a general rule, I’d say allow yourselves a couple minutes to get your bearings on the call and then get straight to the point.
I recommend starting with a positive statement — something like, “I’ve enjoyed our time together,” or “I’m so glad I’ve gotten to know you,” as long as it’s genuine. Then, go ahead and rip off the bandaid, so to speak, and say something along the lines of “But at this point, I don’t see this relationship going anywhere,” or “I’m just not feeling a romantic connection.” You don’t need to over-elaborate on or justify why you’re ending things. And be careful not to give your date any false hope, or room to negotiate with you — the clearer and more direct your speech, the better.
How Do We Get Closure?
The primary pitfall to Zoom breakups is that it can feel a bit anticlimactic, particularly if you’ve been dating someone for months or years at a time. If you had a committed, long-term relationship with someone, know that they may want to meet up in person once the quarantine directive has been lifted. This can definitely help provide a certain sense of closure that a Zoom call might not offer. Ultimately, though, it’s up to you whether you want to have one final face to face conversation (once it’s safe to do so). If you do agree to meet up and say goodbye IRL when conditions have been changed, be sure to make it clear that you are standing by your decision to end the relationship — this is not an opportunity to work things out, but rather, a chance for one final goodbye or hug.
Susan Trombetti, Matchmaker and the CEO of Exclusive Matchmaking.
Previously published by Exclusive Matchmaking- https://exclusivematchmaking.net/blog/what-is-zumping-everything-you-need-to-know-about-how-to-have-a-zoom-breakup/